Rather amazingly First Bus said it would do everything in its power to ensure Mr Heather didn't have to drive the buses with the advert on it.
First Bus said: "As a company we understand Mr Heather's views regarding the atheist bus advert and we are doing what we can to accommodate his request not to drive the buses concerned."
"As an organisation we don't endorse any of the products or sentiments advertised on our buses. The content of this advert has been approved by the Advertising Standards Agency and therefore it is capable of being posted on static sites or anywhere else."
Now isn't this setting a worrying precedent? Do you think that RMT leader, Bob Crow will get Tube drivers up in arms and suggest they refuse to drive London Underground trains with ads in them they don't like?
I've seen ads for all sorts of religions & belief systems inside Tube carriages and I'm sure there are plenty of people (including Tube drivers) that don't agree with the sentiments on the advertisements.
What about entire London Underground trains that are covered in adverts? Wouldn't it be a bit weird for TfL to say "Ah that's alright, you don't agree with London having the 2012 Olympics, so we'll let you off driving the Tube today"?
Update - 27th Jan 2009 - saw another version of the ad this morning
Like how this one is less Dawkins driven and a lot more positive & life affirming, but I suspect it still wouldn't make Mr Heather and many others happy.